Why Latin America’s oldest insurgent communist army is growing

Embedded researcher Oliver Dodd who lived among the armed guerrilla forces of the ELN (Ejército de Liberación Nacional – National Liberation Army) of Colombia, explains their origins, theory and practice.

When founded in 1964, the ELN was, strategically and tactically speaking, inspired by the Cuban Revolution, which proved that a determined and well-organised political-military movement, could bring a solidly US-backed dictatorship to its knees.

Liberation: the bedrock of anti-colonial struggles in Britain

Robin Talbot talks about the historic anti-imperialist campaign Liberation (formerly the Movement for Colonial Freedom) – and how YCLers can fulfil their own historic role.

Today, Liberation is a small campaign that runs from an office in the ASLEF trade union building not far from the Marx Memorial Library in London. But Liberation, which was known as the Movement for Colonial Freedom until the seventies, has been the bedrock of anti-imperialist and anti-colonial struggles in Britain since its founding conference in 1954. Even before then, its predecessor COPAI organised ruthlessly against British meddling abroad, including its bribery and intimidation of the founder of modern-day Botswana noted in the 2016 film “A United Kingdom”.

The youth need quality apprenticeships

Apprenticeships, on paper, sound like a fantastic initiative, right? Learning practical skills for the workplace, gaining qualifications, all while earning a wage. Indeed, there is a romantic image surrounding apprenticeships that still pervades among popular opinion, students learning to become skilled craftsmen at the foot of an all knowing master, the making of the artisans of the future, all very nostalgic.

It was this romantic image that was harnessed by the Conservative Government in its push for apprenticeships, including degree apprenticeships, to be rolled out en masse in the early 2010s, with Cameron vowing to create 3 million apprenticeships, including prestigious ‘degree apprenticeships’, in 2014, payed for via cuts to housing benefit of course.

‘Working Class History’? — None of the above

“Libcom” (short for libertarian communism – read “anarchism”), founded in 2002 by members of the Anarchist Youth Network has, perhaps unsurprisingly given its ideology, had little real world impact. However, since July 2014 they have been subtly undermining the historical record with a populist “on this day” blog on Twitter and Facebook called not “anarchistContinue reading “‘Working Class History’? — None of the above”

2020 NEU Left and Chicago Teachers Union bilateral discussion

On Wednesday 26 February, members of the NEU Left – the broad left-wing alliance within the National Education Union (NEU) – met in the Marx Memorial Library in London with Debby Pope, representative of the Executive Board of the Chicago Teachers Union.

The aim of this meeting was simple: to discuss common challenges, possibilities, and most importantly, how the rank and file members of the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) had managed to successfully build a broad left-wing alliance that achieved power in the union structures and made a difference, including many successful grassroots campaigns.

The Gendered Impact of COVID-19

The ongoing Covid-19 crisis taking place across the world is producing some of the most significant upheavals the world has seen since the Second World War. UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, was first admitted to hospital with the Virus on the 5thof April. His battle with the illness prompted a wave of sympathy, with commentators sending niceties, positing that this highlighted that the Coronavirus can and does affect us all. “We are all in this together”, as Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, argued, and while it is clear that the Coronavirus is affecting us all, it is important to highlight that it is not affecting us all equally. There are obvious class differences in how people are able to cope amid the government lockdown. However, there are also key gender differences, and as usual women are bearing the brunt of both the economic repercussions of the lockdown, and are put at greater risk of infection.

The Other Bloody Sunday – Russia 1905

This article will rightfully be dominated by the commemoration of fourteen innocent civilians who lost their lives amidst the terror inflicted by colonial troops in Derry. The incidents of January 1972 remain etched in the memory of the city and the island, serving a fatal reminder of just how far a colonial order in London will go to maintain hegemonic order over the indigenous Irish in their homes and communities.

The Irish Bloody Sunday is propped up by endless comparable accounts throughout republican history, but it is important to note that imperialists throughout the world maintain similar strategies to subjugate populations to the whims of a ruling class, even within their own domestic boundaries.